“Fantastic – that sounds great. So, when do you want to schedule the session?”
I was at the end of a customer call, post Covid-19. It is important that I specifically mention “post Covid-19,” since it is clearly another world, another life. Like BC (Before Christ) and AD (Anno Domini).
“Friday, of course!”
I swear I could have predicted that answer (– 9.9 times out of 10). For some strange reason which we are yet to decipher, most companies that we are engaging with seem to love scheduling the virtual team building or virtual engagement sessions on a Friday. We, as an organisation, find this very amusing, though. Let me explain why –
If all the days of the week were to be made to stand in one line, Friday would perhaps be the most loved one for just about everyone (not considering Saturday or Sunday who are the divas who everyone fantasises about).
Mondays get a bad rap – but since they are very close to Sundays, they pass off in the daze of the Sunday hangover. As for Tuesdays, it is the beginning of the grind. Not a very popular day, but a day most people “put-up-with!” Thursdays, on the other hand is the “catch-up-for-a-drink” days! Being inseparable best friends with Fridays, the anticipation of Friday makes them pass away in a trice.
And that leaves Wednesdays – the day which carries the ignominy of being referred to as “the hump.”
The wise cat Garfield once explained that Wednesday is actually the worst day of the week because it is too far from the upcoming weekend and we would have forgotten how good it had felt over the previous one. This is exactly what professors Christopher Danforth and Peter Dodds of Vermont University found upon analysing words used in 2.4 million internet blogs. The verdict is out:
“Wednesday is the most miserable day of the week.”
So, coming back to the question: “So when do you want to schedule the session?”
Before we answer that question – Think.
Do you really want to do it on a Friday, when your team members are already trippy and high because of the upcoming weekend (and just can’t wait for you to finish whatever it is that they feel you are “putting them through?’)
Or, do you want to schedule it when their aerials are down, their feet are dragging and their spirit is covered with the dust of pessimism? In other words, when they are feeling (and even looking) like the grumpy cat below?
Team building programs (virtual or face-to-face) in our experience, work best when they are timed well. When the members of the team look forward to it. Hence, scheduling it on a Wednesday makes them unexpected; against the norm. A pleasant surprise and that makes it special, sparks curiosity, and brings a much-appreciated smile onto the faces of the team members. Furthermore, efficient timing gets the internal buzz going and ensures maximum attendance and engagement.
Ergo: The day that you never considered as worthwhile, the day that was quietly tucked in between the other louder days, the ever humble Wednesday is definitely the ideal choice when it comes to scheduling your virtual team building program! Don’t take our word for it. Just try it, the next time around. And let us know if you agree with us.
P.S: Full disclosure – we love all days equally and we have received no special consideration from Wednesdays for putting up this opinion piece in its support.